The executive board of network-equipment vendor Nokia Siemens Networks said it has decided not to take on any new business in Iran and will gradually reduce its existing commitments, effective Jan. 1, 2012.
In a letter to its staff in Iran, the Helsinki-based joint venture cited toughening global sanctions against Iran that "make it almost impossible for Nokia Siemens Networks to do business with Iranian customers." The Wall Street Journal obtained a copy of the letter.
The venture came under fire in 2009 after Siemens disclosed that NSN had provided Iran's largest telecom, government-owned Telecommunications Co. of Iran, with a monitoring center capable of intercepting and recording voice calls on its mobile networks.
NSN had also provided network equipment to TCI's mobile-phone operator, as well as another operator, MTN Irancell, that permitted interception.
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